Museum reopens boats for season; launches Volunteers 1st Day

Press Staff Writer

        On Monday, May 1, the National Museum of the Great Lakes will reopen the Col. James M. Schoonmaker Museum Ship and Museum Tug Ohio for the 2023 season.
        That same day, the museum will welcome volunteers during a new “Volunteers 1st Day.”
        In addition, beginning in May, the museum’s hours will increase from six to seven days a week. The hours are Monday through Saturday 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sunday 12-5 p.m.
        “May 1 has always marked the beginning of our museum vessel season, but this year, the date has increased significance as a way to celebrate and engage the community with our mission during ‘Volunteers 1st Day,’” said Rebecca Gray, who oversees the museum’s volunteer initiative. “Volunteers are vital to the museum’s mission, and we are really focused on providing more opportunities to individuals interested in donating their time.”
        To help increase volunteer opportunities, on the first of every month. the museum will host “drop-in days” for volunteers to support its mission in various ways. In addition, a “Crew Connection” newsletter has been developed and is being sent out monthly to update volunteers on all the ways they can get involved.
        The museum ships close annually over the winter months, reopening for public tours only between May 1 and Oct. 31. When open, visitors can climb aboard the 617-foot cargo ship and historic tug to experience what life was like on the lakes in the early 1900s.
        The interior of the museum features awe-inspiring stories from the Great Lakes exhibited through breathtaking photography, over 300 artifacts, a number of powerful audiovisual displays and 40 hands-on interactive exhibits.
        To pre-purchase tickets for a museum visit To learn more about volunteering or to sign up to volunteer, visit
        The National Museum of the Great Lakes is located at 1701 Front St., Toledo. Admission is $17 (museum and ship) and $11 (museum only) for adults 18-64; $16 (museum and ship) and $10 (museum only) for seniors 65 and older; $14 (museum and ship) and $8 (museum only) for youths 6-17. Children under 5 and NMGL members are admitted free.


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